I’ve never done anything but dream. This, and this alone, has been the meaning of my life. My only real concern has been my inner life. FERNANDO PESSOA

Thursday, 7 February 2008

Season Of Mists





In Leon my travelling companion Laurent branched north to Oviedo. This was a variation on the usual pilgrim route to Santiago - longer, wilder and more arduous. He had always planned to do this. I set off westwards and alone through the suburbs of Leon in the direction of Astorga.

It took me 3 days to walk the 54 km to Astorga. I didn't rush. The countryside gradually turned slightly less cultivated, slightly hillier, slightly more wooded. I passed sepulchral groves of holm oak and fir. In one village I ate the luscious red fruits of a madrone tree which were scattered liberally over the pavement.

A highlight of these 3 days was the bridge over the rio Órbigo (1st pic) - one of the longest and oldest medieval bridges in Spain.

The imaginative economy of the nesting stork is clearly demonstrated in the 2nd pic...

... and my 3rd pic shows one of the many pilgrim resting places or relaxation areas which are to be found all along the Camino. This one was very unusual, though...

From the Cruceiro de Santo Toribio (4th pic) you can see, I'm told, on a clear day, the lovely old Roman city of Astorga and the fertile plain before it...

2 comments:

Mary Sheehan Winn said...

What a feat, or should I say 'feet'.
Amazing blog.

The Solitary Walker said...

Thank you, Mary. My feet have only just recovered 6 weeks later!